Bwaha. BwaHAHAHAHA!


The other best piece of writing advice I’ve ever heard – one I’ve done my best to pass on through what’s been ten years of school visits – goes something like this:

The only good reason to write is if you’ll be miserable if you stop. Or, as one author put it to me when I first started out, ‘Don’t do it – not unless you can’t not do it.’

A year ago, after twenty years of doing it, I quit writing to become a musician. I’d decided at the time that the writing part of my life was over. The fact that in the months since I haven’t missed writing at all suggests I was right.

I’m still a Patron of Reading (reading: now that’s something that really would make me miserable if I ever had to stop). My published books still exist. Velvet still exists, though when or if I’ll go back to it I don’t currently know. There is one more complete short story that may make an appearance somewhere sometime – and, for now, these websites still exist. But this blog ends here.

My thanks to anyone who reads this message, and to all the people I’ve had the good fortune to meet through what remains, to me at least, an astonishingly lucky writing career.

If you’re interested in following or hearing what I do now, the places on the internet where I’m currently least inactive (;p) are Facebook and Soundcloud.

Best wishes to you,

Sam

I haven’t admitted this officially before because I’m still raw about it, but here goes: the big book I’ve been working on these last four years? I’ve put it aside.

Last October, after we’d gamely knocked three drafts back and forth without agreeing what we wanted, my publisher cancelled my contract. My agent – before she quit the business – told me that she didn’t think she could sell the book to anyone else. Now my new agent has gently but definitely confirmed to me that the book has fundamental problems and ‘needs a lot of work.’

I can take a hint. ;p

One problem with the book is that I’ve put so much time and love into it that now I’m too close to it to see or accept what I would have to do to take it further. So, until/unless I get the distance and objectivity I need, I’m doing the next best thing I can do: I’ve stopped working on it, and started writing other stuff.

I’ve got a brand new novella out under consideration, I’m working on another short project right now, and my next full-length book is already underway. Meanwhile, for the time being, I’m sad to say that all that anyone else will hear or see of my broken but beautiful, crazy-ambitious, utopian SF rock-and-roll epic is its title and this gorgeous cover by genius illustrator Barnaby Richards:

VELVETbySamEnthovenCoverByBarnabyRichards

To those brave, kind few who have read the book as it currently stands, my thanks.

To VELVET, au revoir.

Sam

I am THRILLED to announce that I now have a new literary agent – Davinia Andrew-Lynch of all-new agency Andlyn. Davinia’s enthusiasm, savvy, ambition and imagination all impress me mightily (and the fact that we’re both big fans of the film The Dark Crystal is a definite plus factor too ;D). Here’s to a highly promising partnership.

HURRAH for the wondrous Katie WebSphinx who, between running her own brilliant business and raising three young Sphinxlings, somehow found the time this month to update my websites.

SamEnthovenTitle

Broken links have been zapped and spammers foiled. In addition, though we’ve sadly had to say goodbye to my sites’ defunct Guestbooks, anyone who wants to reach me can now do so directly via this email address: sam at samenthoven dot com. That’s if you wouldn’t prefer FacebookTwitterLastFMLibraryThing or Wattpad – links to my profiles on which can all be found at my squeaky clean and fully firing homepage.

Katie has been kindly and patiently helping and guiding me with her web-fu and wisdom for nearly ten years now.

Thank you, Katie. You are AWESOME. 😀

This is from a fascinating and inspiring book called The Art of Asking by Amanda Palmer. I feel it always, and this week especially.

When you’re an artist, nobody ever tells you or hits you with the magic wand of legitimacy. You have to hit your own head with your own handmade wand. And you feel stupid doing it.

There’s no “correct path” to becoming a real artist. You might think you’ll gain legitimacy by going to art school, getting published, getting signed to a record label. But it’s all bullshit, and it’s all in your head. You’re an artist when you say you are. And you’re a good artist when you make somebody else experience or feel something deep or unexpected.

Mine snapped a while back. It’s held together with tape and hope. But it’s still there.

Putting out my short stories on Wattpad has been a lot of fun so far. I’ve decided to take things a step further…

CRAWLERS

From today on Wattpad I’m going to serialize the whole of my book Crawlers for anyone to read on their desktop, laptop, tablet, smartphone or other internet-access device of choice, for free.

I plan to put it out in episodes three times a week for the next ten weeks.

As I was writing the book I imagined what it would be like to read it in serial form on one’s phone. The idea drove me to make Crawlers as fast, tense and relentlessly thrilling as I could. Putting the book to this test for real at last is very exciting for me. I hope readers get a kick out of it too. 😀

Click through to the Crawlers page on Wattpad here.

This below is from Agota Kristof, author of my favourite thing I read in 2014, The Notebook. It’s from another and almost equally astonishing book of Kristof’s, called The Illiterate:

How do you become a writer? First of all, naturally, you must write. Then, you must continue to write. Even when it doesn’t interest anyone. Even when you feel that it will never interest anyone. Even when the manuscripts pile up in the drawers and you forget them, while writing new ones.

…Here is the answer to the question: you become a writer by writing with patience and obstinacy, without ever losing faith in what you write.

That’s the mission. Now to get back to it.

The conclusion of The Last Duel is now live and free on my Wattpad page. Here – at the slight risk of giving away how the story ends, if you don’t know yet! – is a collage I made of the rest of Phil Harvey‘s stunning sketches.

TheLastDuelWeek3PencilsByPhilHarvey

Happy holidays to all readers, and power to your tentacles for the New Year.

My sinister masterplan continues. May yours do likewise. 😀

Sam

Part Two of The Last Duel is now live and free on my Wattpad page. To go with it, here’s a collage I made of some of the gorgeous sketches that were created for the story by ace artist and illustrator Phil Harvey.

TheLastDuelWattpadWeek2PencilsByPhilHarvey

More next week with Part Three. 😀

In the spirit of the season here’s a gift that I hope you’ll like – a short story of mine called The Last Duel.

TheLastDuelSketchArtByPhilHarvey

I’m putting it out on Wattpad for free in three parts, one a week for the next three weeks. On my profile there you’ll find four more free stories of mine that have already appeared elsewhere on the internet. The Last Duel, however, has never seen daylight before.

If you like action, romance or both I hope you’ll find it worth your wallop. And see the sketch above, that I’m using for a cover? It’s by a fabulous artist called Phil Harvey. There’s more of his work to show you next week, with part two. 😀

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